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Hi there....how much exercise do your setters get per day? I feel sorry for my guy sometimes as i always think he could take more exercise than what we give him........
This is 'Peppers' routine........adding that we live in an apartment...so no garden!!!!

7.30am - up and walkies (30 minutes) before breakfast
bit of play and then sleep
1pm - out to the countryside for an hour on really long lead (we actually let it just trail on the ground most of the time)
some play, some sleep
5pm - out for about 30-45 mins walk on lead/ or trip to dog park
and if hes a bit over active, he goes out again for a walk around the block (20 mins)

How does this sound?!!!

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Hi Caroline,

How old is Pepper?
It sounds pretty good to me! In one of these fancy expert books I read that fully grown setters need three hours a day. My two are 15 months old and get 2,5 hours - which is 1,5 hours n the morning, and about an hour in the evening. Ok, we have a big backyard, which helps. Mind you, our girl is hyperactive at times. Dogs have different temperaments, like humans.

What I can read, Pepper is doing fine. Three times a day gives him variety. Do you do some training or some games with him? That adds to the fun! Our dogs are smart, walks only can be boring...

Don't worry too much, just enjoy your quality time!
My dogs get an hour a day walking (this includes my 5-months old puppy).
This is normally early in the morning and the walk will include off the lead (in turns) and some training like heel-work and recalls. During the day they can go out in the garden if they want to and I also have a 3-acre field for them to run in, but quite frankly they think this is pretty boring and mainly limit themselves to a quick run up and down and then standing at the gate wanting to be let out again.
As they dont play in the garden either, its mainly the one-hour walk that is their highlight of the day.
I do train quite a few evenings, but that is with one dog only.
So the others get to stay at home.

I do feel that the more excersise you give, the more they demand. I have puppy-buyers that will walk their dogs for a minimum of 3 hours a day, yet the dogs never seem satisfied and keep wanting more. As I work at home, the dogs have to keep a fairly low profile during the day, and they do.
So obviously they feel they are getting enough.
At least two hours per day! In the winter I take her out for a late morning walk of 30 to 40 minutes. Around 16.00 hours we have a walk of 45 minutes to an hour. At night my husband takes her out on his bicycle for 30 minutes. In the summertime it is often three hours per day. The first two walks are the same, but in the summertime I take her out for a walk for at least a hour every night.
I think your dog will let you know if they aren't getting enough. My dog gets 2-3 hours a day but all at one time. We hike at our dog park about 2 miles and he is off lead and runs free and plays with the other dogs if he wants too. Sometimes he is a social butterfly and many times just hangs with me. I do not take leach walks more than about 1-2 a week at that is at our large petstore. I do not like walking him in our neighborhood because too many dogs have been off leach and Dub is very leach reactive at times. Now that he is on medication he sleeps half the day away till his time comes to go out. But even before medication this has been his routine since 10 weeks of age and he seems just fine with it. He really likes spending his morning in bed. In summer months if he is still not chilled out in the evening we go play at Grandma's house with her dog for another hour.
I think part of it is exercise. I think part is mental stimulation! I take my dog running with me about 2-3 times a week on week days - 4-6 miles at a time. And we get in two long walks instead of a run on the weekend - 4-6 miles each as well. During the week, he also goes to day care every day. Normally, when I bring him home from day care, he is pooped in the evenings. Just lounges around and sleeps. On the weekends when he does not get that day care and socialization, even with a long walk he seems to get bored and a little restless. So I will try to get him to the dog park and that helps or an interactive toy to keep him mentally active at least. Bottom line - a tired dog is a good dog. Just depends on what it takes to get yours tired! :)
Hi, Caroline.
It sounds fine to me. ;))

If you want your setter happy and tired, try mental activity. Try to teach him new tricks or you can hide him a ball or something and tell him to search for it. If you go for a walk, hide yourself, let him search for you.

Good luck!
Kristina
Hi - Feel a bit of a fraud being new here and having only owned one Irish Setter before, but would like to say that there is nothing wrong with the amount of exercise your young dog is getting, routine plays just as big a part as exercise, don't feel guilt tripped into thinking you have to 'do more', you won't tire him out, I believe Irish setters can become addicted like athletes to the endorphins released by exercise and become hyperactive. From my experience with my setter Jinty I do think I over exercised her, she thought we always had to be on the 'go' and was 'full on' until she was over 4 years old and it was exhausting, I am determined not to repeat this with my new pup Rio who is 4 months old. After all just because they are a breed that can 'run all day' does not mean that they should or indeed be allowed to, most dog's left to their own devices are just as happy to lay around and sleep with the pack. I would also say that anything you can do that is mentally stimulating is every bit as important in keeping your dog happy.
The thing with extremely long walks you touched in this discussion my well be true - at least I can speak for humans :)).

I find that Gina is the happiest dog after our 1 1/2 hours morning walk and run on the beach. But we always interrupt and do some training - whatever comes into mind. Can be agility stuff (runs and turns, lefts and rights and following my hands), bring the ball, "find me" (I hide behind bushes and trees, she sits and stay til I call her), and of course, heaps of new tricks or a good swim. She is happy about the mental stimulation and enjoys our communication. It is the key to our being "best mates".

In the evening, we go out to walk, run and play together with Gina's brother Anton, but then without any training.

Also, we go to a non-competitive agitily group once a week. I feel that Gina is a content dog. She is not demanding at all. Like Ursula, I work at home and need to fully concentrate on what I do. During these hours, is quiet, has a snooze or just watches me.
I have always had set exercise routines with my Irish, which involves free running exercise totalling approx 2 hours daily. I have found this keeps my dogs happy and healthy. Now that I work at home, my dogs have their first walk/run when we get up and then another after breakfast, then one at lunchtime and another later afternoon. If Daisy has her way they have another walk after tea too! Whilst the dogs have free access to our 20 acre property they expect escorted walks which also keeps me fit. On our walks they fossick through the woods, paddle in the ponds, and also enjoy sitting on the hillside contemplating life. When I worked fulltime I used to get up at 5.30am all year round to ensure the dogs got their exercise before I went to work - the dogs and me sure don't miss those early starts!
I, like Michelle, advocate exercising my boy's mind as much as I exercise his body - more so in fact. It would be like us going on a marathon and then sitting in our armchair the whole time afterwards without doing anything at all. Very boring.
Since giving Ray mental stimulation he is a far happier chappy than letting him stagnate.
Pat

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